The Church must be ashamed of itself
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If there is one institution in Zimbabgwe that should be ashamed of itself, it is the Church. Whilst there are some churches and church leaders who have sought to be a voice of justice, especially the Catholic Church, no matter how much in dispute their doctrines be, the majority of churches are actually complicit in the Shona agenda in Zimbabgwe as envisaged in the preceding document. Also, whilst before independence and in the early days we had some bishops standing up against injustice, today much of what we have is a bunch of ministers of religion mostly intent on extorting money from the pockets of their congregants on the pretext of opening a 'door of blessing' for them, whilst the adherents daily suffer injustice.
One can easily observe on Sunday mornings walking into a great number of churches in Matabeleland today that happily conduct their services in Shona [what is wrong is not using the Shona language in a church service, but doing so at the expense of and rejecting the use of local languages]. In fact, that was the reason I changed churches. I tried to communicate the need for reform in the church I used to attend but no action would be taken. Lies would be told that we locals are not coming up with songs to be used in the services, yet the people saying so will happily sing Nigerian and Zambian songs. It is just an unconscious (or conscious) perpetuation of lies that characterize the Zimbabgwean establishment. And the church leadership makes no effort whatsoever to develop and promulgate a language policy that favors all in their ranks.
I have often wondered if the church in Zimbabgwe is really genuine in its mission. How on earth does it expect to attract to its ranks those who grew up as orphans as a result of their parents being killed by the Shona speaking 5th Brigade who forced people to sing Shona songs whilst dancing on the graves of their loved ones?
How does an elderly woman who was raped by men of the 5th Brigade and accused of giving birth to dissidents supposed to come and fellowship at a Shona- speaking church, using the language that she was so humiliated with?
I am sure we will not be entirely wrong to compare the Zimbabgwean church to that of Rwanda. Rwanda was said to be almost 100% Christian, but that could not stop the 1994 Rwandan Genocide. In fact, we saw church bishops taking up the machete and butchering their own congregants. I fear that if there was a repetition of the Gukurahundi Genocide in Zimbabgwe, most Shona church leaders are likely to preach Romans 13 - Obey the government - instead of being a voice of justice.
Some love to hide behind the satanic claim that the church should not be involved in politics, yet by so doing they are hypocritically being complicit to the injustices perpetrated against non-Shonas on a daily basis in Zimbabgwe. I guess the church in Zimbabgwe needs to start listening to the words of that shepherd who tended his sheep among the shepherds of Tekoa, the Prophet Amos. Through him the God of Heaven and Earth called out:
I can't stand your religious meetings. I'm fed up with your conferences and conventions. I want nothing to do with your religion projects, your pretentious slogans and goals. I'm sick of your fund-raising schemes, your public relations and image making. I've had all I can take of your noisy ego-music. When was the last time you sang to me? Do you know what I want? I want justice - oceans of it. I want fairness - rivers of it. That's what I want. That's all I want (Amos 5: 21-24, Message).
Excerpts from my book, The Rebirth of Bukalanga.
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Source: Excerpts from my book, The Rebirth of Bukalanga.
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